Garden and Orchard

The End of Our Summer Veggies

The last of our tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants.
These are most likely the last of our tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants.

The End of Our Summer Veggies

The cool days of autumn slow the production of tomatoes, peppers, beans, and other heat loving veggies. I feel a little sad when I walk through the garden and see tiny little peppers that will never ripen. It’s always bittersweet knowing that there won’t be any more of my favorite summer vegetables to pick this season. But that doesn’t mean that my work in the garden is done!

The broccoli, cabbage, kale, pak choi, and other cool season crops are still going strong. I have potatoes, rutabagas, carrots, and beets to dig and bring in the basement for storage. I need to pick the rest of the green tomatoes to ripen on the windowsill. There is plenty of basil to pick and dry or make into pesto to freeze. I’d like to dry some oregano and mint for winter too.

Our weather reports have made no mention of frost so far this fall and next week we may see warmer days. Perhaps we’ll sneak in a few more ripe veggies, but I know it won’t last long. So I will continue blanching and freezing peppers and beans, and I have one last batch of spaghetti sauce on the stove cooking down.

Homemade spaghetti sauce - Ready to stash away for the winter.
Homemade spaghetti sauce – Ready to stash away for the winter.

Putting the Garden to Bed for Winter

Before long I’ll need to start fall cleanup. The weeds always take over at some point in the summer and now is high time to pull them and dig my beds for spring. I’d love to get the whole garden cleaned up when I get a chance.

There are still horseradish roots to harvest for homemade horseradish sauce. I want to dig up a few of my Fort Laramie strawberries to pot up and put in a sunny windowsill. They are a day neutral variety and I would love to have a few berries to snack on over the winter. I saved one of my sweet pepper plants that is potted up and acclimating to the life of a houseplant. Now if our goofy cat would just leave it alone, I’d be happy! I have pots of kale going into the greenhouse to extend their season and maybe I’ll get some more lettuce planted. We’ll see if the weather holds out long enough. Looks like I have plenty to keep me busy this fall!

I always have trouble getting the whole root.
Horseradish roots…yum!

5 Comments on “The End of Our Summer Veggies

  1. Just when my green beans are going strong the cool weather is starting to set in! Arrruuugh! I had such a problem with white fly, spider mites and aphids this year that my harvest was minimal – at best! Oh well, there is always next year!

    1. Hi Vickie,
      That is soooo frustrating! I hear you! The rabbits ate most of my bush beans down to little stubs. I did get some nice harvests from my pole beans and they are still doing pretty well, considering that the temps have been down into the 40s overnight.

      I hope you have a better harvest next year!

  2. Hi Gretchen,
    I rarely get my garden cleaned up in the fall, but I’m hoping to this year. A cover crop would be a great idea and I think I have some winter radish seeds so that would be a good idea. Thanks for the suggestion!

  3. Do you plant a cover crop in your garden? As I pull the remnants from each vegetable, I till the soil and sow fall radish seed. It suppresses weeds so I don’t have to weed as much. They also winter kill so I don’t have a problem tilling in the spring.

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